From Out Of Nowhere
One of the reasons it's sometimes hard to be a Leafs fans is the level of expectation that comes with an over-saturation of information. Being a sports fan in general is all about the unexpected things that can happen within an environment bound by strict rules. One thing Leafs fans don't really get to see is something happen that wasn't already thought about, predicted, reviewed, panned or just plain-old bitched about. Other NHL teams have had small surprises, like the Oilers' Sam Gagner on 2007/08. Or huge surprises, like Steve Mason winning the Calder trophy with veteran-like numbers last season. I tried being scientific about finding who the last great surprise in Toronto was, but our spotlight on prospects is a little too bright too. How many teams, in any sport, has a prospect system under as much pressure. Jiri Tlusty can attest to the pressure and the down side of being under a microscope. Back to that last surprise sensation; I would have to say the last stand out that made the camp with little fanfare would be Tomas Kaberle. Some of you may say, "What about Luke Schenn?". I would say that so far he hasn't been an impact player and really won't ever be a gamebreaker in the league. I see Schenn as more of a Adam Foote-type or Robyn Regher-like player that can give some guys some stitches in the crease. But that time hasn't come yet. What's the Leafs next big surprise? I'm, not sure, people like us little bloggers almost make that impossible now-a-days.